June 7, 2013
When we started planning for our African Safari, we contacted several operators. Only Thomson Safaris came back with an itinerary that mirrored our desires and added an a few exceptional options we never thought of, including Gibbs Farm and Shanga Shangaa in Arusha.
Needless to say our experience with Thomson Safaris started off on the right foot. The pre-trip materials and welcome packet were well prepared and Paul patiently answered all of our questions.
We arrived in Tanzania and were greeted by our guide, James. From the start he gave us a good impression with his professional appearance, knowledge of the area, leadership and warmth.
The Ngorogoro Nyumba being placed in that spectacular Acacia forest was so beautiful. I think we liked the food at the Ngorogoro Nyumba best. At each camp, the food was superb and we are so very thankful that you and your chefs were able to accommodate our vegan traveler.
Some of Marcia & Tom’s Photos:
Zebra in Serengeti National Park
Hyenas in Ngorongoro Crater
Lion in Ngorongoro Crater
Brown Hooded Kingfisher in Tarangire National Park
Baboon and baby in Tarangire National Park
Elephant in Ngorongoro Crater
Flamingos in Ngorongoro Crater
On our last morning in the Serengeti there were wildebeest and zebra for miles and miles. James made our short morning game drive a memorable one and stayed with us until he safely saw the plane to take off for Arusha.
It is the little things that makes Thomson Safaris so great: The travel journal with the bird/animal listings (we have a few to add by the way), the attention to detail in the tents, the writing desk and lamp out front, the friendliness of the staff, the hand washing station at each meal, the opportunity to learn a little Swahili and so much more.
This was a trip to celebrate my 50th birthday and I truly wanted it to be special, but who knew it was even better than we imagined. It was like living inside an IMAX movie for 8 days.
Please give Rick & Judi our best wishes for their continued success.
Marcia & Tom Blackwell
Private Safari, March 2013
Watch the Video Slideshow Marcia & Tom made of their safari:
June 3, 2013
We had a fantastic – awesome safari! All three of our guides were fantastic, especially Leonard. While we were visiting a local school, Leonard gave a talk to the 7th grade class. I believe the subject was “confidence”. He also gave us several lectures on our safari.
It is apparent that he loves, and is proud of, his country, the people, the animals, and the kids. I think he is also proud of Thomson Safaris for the work they do in the community. We still talk about and show photos to our friends about the trip and sing the praises of Thomson Safaris.
A very special highlight was watching a Cheetah Mom train her four cubs to hunt and kill. We saw two kills, which we are told is very rare.
Jim & Judy A.
Signature Thomson Safari, February 2013
View photos of Jim & Judy’s safari here:
Leopard in a tree in Serengeti National Park
Cheetah in Serengeti National Park
Black Rhino in Ngorongoro Crater
Elephant Relaxing in Tarangire National Park
Cheetah mom training her cubs in the Serengeti
Cheetah mom with her cubs in the Serengeti
Sunset in Serengeti National Park
May 9, 2013
I have stayed at a number of 5 star hotels in my lifetime, but the places we stayed at during this safari were just as good, only difference were the people, they genuinely cared about us.
The guides for our safari, Arthur and Koa, were amazing. I don’t know how they spotted various birds far away in trees, but they did and consequently I was able to get fantastic photos of the birds. I called Arthur “Bush Eye.” They did not just answer our questions about animals or plants, they always told a little story that explained how that animal or plant tied in to everything else. They were truly amazing.
We also met Rick Thomson and Judi Wineland and were able to spend one evening with them and had a great conversation. We sure appreciated what their vision is for their company and the people they affect in Tanzania.
We saw all the animals we could possibly see. All by all we rate this safari as our best vacation and best experience with the people who make Thomson Safaris work.
Ed & Karen B.
Signature Thomson Safari, December 2012
Click to enlarge photos from Ed & Karen’s safari
March 17, 2013
I had a wonderful time in Tanzania AGAIN with Thomson. One of the camps actually made me a cake for my 9th Thomson trip! Abu and Freddy were wonderful guides and so knowledgeable, as are all the Thomson Safaris guides.
We had so many WOW moments on this trip! I have now been on 32 safaris and it is hard to WOW me, but I was, several times. We saw about 40 sub-adult male elephants fighting each other very seriously, even drawing blood on occasion. We saw 31 giraffes crossing the highway on the way to the Serengeti and 2 of them got into a serious fight – even Freddy took a picture with his cell phone! We saw a heard of about 500 cape buffalo with 12 lions stalking them; the buffalo finally saw what was happening and started a stampede, one of the buffalo caught up with the male lion and gored it. The lion was laying on its back very hurt when 11 female lions came to his rescue and enticed the buffalo to go after them so the male lion could get up and run for cover. There were also lots of elephants chasing hippos out of a watering hole, along with several other wonderful sightings.
I love Thomson and think you have wonderful guides. Thanks for another wonderful trip!
Highlights of Tanzania Safari, October 2012
Leopard in tree
Giraffes in Serengeti
Lion cub on kopje
March 4, 2013
We saw so much wildlife and had a new adventure everyday! Karen’s Highlights of Tanzania Safari Review
The safari met all my expectations and then some! All of our guides were good; I’m still amazed that John could steer the Land Rover over awful terrain, keep an eye out for game, answer questions and swat tse tse flies all at the same time, without ever looking rattled!
The food was wonderful, the camp crews were accommodating. When it came time to walk back to the Nyumba after a little wine and conversation around the campfire, the camp staff was always available to walk us there. I never felt in danger, even when I woke up and heard lions.
I think the best part was having a new adventure each of our 10 days. We saw so much wildlife in our first few days that I figured the last few days would be just more of the same. Not so. It wasn’t until the last full day that we saw the wildebeest cross the Mara (at least the ones not eaten by crocodiles). I didn’t think I cared about the wildebeest/zebra migration, but I’m so glad I saw it. And, just when I was resigned to not seeing a cheetah, we spotted one close by. Not only did we see that cheetah, we saw it chase and take down a baby gazelle and proceed to eat it. Sounds grizzly (and it was sad to see the mother stand on the hill and watch the whole process), but you know it’s nature at work. And not 30 minutes later, we saw a mother cheetah and three cheetah cubs, up close and personal.
I have new respect for Land Rovers. I didn’t quite get the importance of Thomson’s promise of a window seat for each person until I saw other safari groups packed like sardines in open jeeps, while we switched sides, jumped up and down, shared spaces, etc.
Highlights of Tanzania Safari, October 2012
March 1, 2013
The trip was absolutely amazing!!! The entire safari exceeded my expectations in every way! Everyone at Thomson Safaris is great. I can’t say enough about our wonderful guides, O.J. and James, they were the best and I miss spending my days with them. I am actually depressed now that I am home, I want to go back!!!
We had so many good times, here’s a few highlights:
- Watching the baby elephants playing, and stumbling on their legs…so cute!!
- Seeing TWO Black Rhinos in the Northern Serengeti….awesome!!
- My favorite – the lions lounging around with not a care in the world.
- Gibb’s Farm, wow! Easily, the best place I’ve ever stayed!!
Thank you Thomson for a fabulous trip!!!! I can’t say enough about how well you all prepared me for this trip! I followed the guidelines to the every word and was fully prepared! The check list on what to pack was spot on, I would have been lost without it!
Signature Thomson Safari, November 2012